Monday, September 15, 2014

The Africa Center Opens to Public for the First Time at “Meet The Africa Center” in New York City, Sept. 20, 2014 10 AM - 6 PM; Chelsea Clinton is New Co-Chair

Traveling Exhibition: 
Dynasty And Divinity
Ife Art in Ancient Nigeria

Board of Trustees announces election of new Co-Chair

New York, NY (September 15, 2014)The Africa Center, Africa’s Embassy to the World announced that on Saturday, September 20th, The Africa Center will open its doors to the public for the first time, with an all-day “Meet The Africa Center” festival from 10:00am until 6:00pm.  A private concert performance will follow from 8:00pm until midnight.

Once known as The Museum for African Art, The Africa Center has expanded its mission to become the world’s leading civic African institution.  The Center is located less than 20 minutes from the United Nations, at One Museum Mile, and plans to permanently open in late 2016.

All are invited to the one-day extravaganza on September 20th, which will introduce the New York community to its new neighbor at The Africa Center’s stunning home at 1280 Fifth Avenue.  The “Meet The Africa Center” festival will be a celebration of African culture, featuring an art installation by Nigerian artist Emeka Ogboh; performances by the Dance Theater of Harlem; musical presentations by OkayAfrica; a West African Photo Booth; healthy living presentations and African-Influenced tastings by Alexander Smalls and The Cecil; and screenings of ONE’s inspirational film, The Power of Protest Music.

Attendees will also have the opportunity to learn about and sample African cuisine, partake in educational craft workshops, listen to African musicians and storytellers, and much more, all while listening to the sounds of traditional and contemporary African music.

The evening concert at The Africa Center, is a special edition of the Festival-in-Exile, a solidarity event hosted in conjunction with the The Timbuktu Renaissance initiative.  The evening will feature many of the finest Malian musicians and special guest stars, in a unifying performance, including Amanar, Amkoullel, Rocky Dawuni, Salif Keïta; Samba Touré and Vieux Farka Touré; with remarks by H.E. N’Diaye Ramatoulaye Diallo, Minister of Culture of Mali.  All the way from the ancient cross-roads of Timbuktu, the concert is a musical exploration highlighting the profound connections between West African and American Blues.
Partners: The Cecil, Dance Theatre of Harlem, Harlem Eat Up!, Okayafrica, The NYC Department of Cultural Affairs, ONE, El Museo del Barrio, Wells Fargo and iMarc.

Supporters: The Government of Mali, The Brookings Institution, Festival au Desert, USAIDS/Office of Transition Initiatives,,, Marcus Samuelsson of Red Rooster Harlem, The OIC.

Sponsors: The Boston Consulting Group, Voss Water and The Voss Foundation, Empire Entertainment.

Chelsea Clinton elected new Co-Chair of the Board of Trustees

The Africa Center is also pleased to announce Chelsea Clinton, Vice Chair of the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation, has been elected as the new co-chair of the Board of Trustees for The Africa Center.

As Vice Chair of the Clinton Foundation, Chelsea’s work emphasizes improving global and domestic health, creating service opportunities, and empowering the next generation of leaders. Chelsea also serves on the boards of the Clinton Health Access Initiative, the School of American Ballet, Common Sense Media, and the Weill Cornell Medical College.  She is the Co-Chair of the Advisory Board of the Of Many Institute at New York University.

Chelsea will succeed Ian Bruce Eichner, Founder and Chairman of The Continuum Company, as Co-Chair of The Africa Center.  Previously Chair of the Board of Trustees, duringMr. Eichner’s tenure The Museum for African Art was transformed and expanded to become The Africa Center.

Together with Co-Chair Hadeel Ibrahim, Executive Director of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, Mr. Eichner and Ms. Ibrahim envisioned a new world class cultural institution that embraces the entire African continent, including and beyond African Art.  Mr. Eichner’s new role is Vice Chair of The Africa Center’s Board of Trustees.

The Africa Center’s Board of Trustees leadership team also includes Mr. Ashish J. Thakkar, Board Treasurer and Mr. Hosh Ibrahim, Board Secretary.

Mr. Thakkar, Founder of the Mara Group and Mara Foundation joined the Board of Trustees in January of 2014.  Mr. Ibrahim, Founder, Planet Developments, also joined the Board of Trustees in January of 2014.

The Africa Center will provide a gateway for engagement between Africa, New York City and the world.  Spanning culture, policy and business, The Africa Center aims to transform the international understanding of Africa and promote direct engagement between African artists, business leaders and civil society and their counterparts from the United States and beyond.

Media Contact: 
David Wachsman, Ericho Communications,, 646-481-8240

The Africa Center
Our Vision: To be Africa’s Embassy to the World.  Our Mission: To be the premier international destination for dialogue on critical issues of the day facing the development, understanding, and advancement of the African continent, its citizens, and its culture.
The Africa Center     @TheAfricaCenter     @TheAfricaCenter     #theafricacenter

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